Friday Mobile Roundup: Activision, RIM, Messaging & More

Modern Warfare 3Activision Talks Mobile — In a piece from The New York Times, Activision’s chief executive Eric Hirshberg spoke about the company’s future mobile plans. Though the company is planning more mobile releases with Skylanders Spyro’s Adventure and Call of Duty: Elite, a mobile feature for the upcoming Modern Warfare 3,  its core focus remains on consoles. Hirshberg notes that there are just too many apps in the App Store and the company doesn’t want to be just “number 400,001.” Moreover, he says that “We also don’t want to do anything that we can’t do with excellence.”

Desert Zombie Powered by Unreal — Another iOS game is getting powered by the Unreal Engine. Slide to Play has come across a new upcoming game by the name of Desert Zombie: Last Stand from developer Crystalised. Though information on the game is limited, it appears to be a first-person shooter.

Bing for Mobile Aides in App Discovery — Microsoft is improving its Bing for Mobile application by integrating a bit of app discovery. Whenever users search for something using the Bing app, the search results will also display other applications that may be relevant to said search.

iMessageNew Messaging Apps to Kill SMS — Along with the iMessage app announced for iOS 5 — which allows users to send messages over the Internet to other Apple users rather than with SMS — the Wall Street Journal has noted that Google is working on its own counterpart of iMessage for Android as well. Though no other information was provided, this would join both iMessage and RIM’s BlackBerry Messenger app, effectively leading the way to the death of SMS in which cell phone users spend around 20 cents per text message and up to $20 for unlimited texting.

Qwiki Hits 500,000 Downloads — Roughly a month ago, one of the previous top emerging free iPad apps, Qwiki, hit a milestone of 250,000 downloads in a week. Now, the company is reporting that it has doubled that number with 500,000 downloads.

Twitter Integration on iOS 5 — Along with a slew of other features for iOS 5, the new operating system is also set to come with Twitter integration. Through this Twitter connection, iOS applications have access to Twitter users’ credentials and features.  As TechCrunch states in its more extensive breakdown of the integration, it works comparably to Facebook Connect, and thus dubs it “Twitter Connect.”

Compatibility CheckAndroid Now Checks App Compatability — According to Android Central, the Android Market now finally provides a device compatibility check before an app is downloaded.

[image via Android Central]

BlackBerry Playbook Expanding to 16 New Markets — Research In Motion is expanding the markets for its BlackBerry PlayBook tablet over the next 30 days. RIM announced that it would reach out to 16 new markets including the U.K., Spain, France, the Netherlands, Hong Kong, Indonesia, and more.

Visa Moves Further into Mobile Playments with Fundamo Acquisition — Visa is moving deeper into the realm of mobile payments. According to VentureBeat, the company has acquired Fundamo, a vendor of “mobile financial services technology for the unbanked and underbanked,” for $110 million. Fundamo operates within many markets, but focuses on Africa and the Middle East.

Top Mobile Apps Pose Security Risks — Engadget is reporting some new finds from security firm, viaForensics, who have found that popular mobile apps such as Netflix, LinkedIn, and Foursquare are not as secure as users would hope. Utilizing its appWatchdog tool, viaForensics found that all three stored passwords unencrypted. Foursquare, at least, has since remedied the issue (though search history remains unencrypted).